Since 2014, Ottawa Riverkeeper has been working to have triclosan banned from Canadian products. Triclosan is used as an antimicrobial agent in a wide variety of consumer products in Canada. They are often found in personal care and cleaning products – antibacterial soaps, skin cleansers, toothpaste, and general purpose cleaners and detergents are just a few places you can find this chemical.
Unfortunately, it is often washed down drains, where it is extremely harmful to aquatic plants and animals. It has been known to kill off important algae in our waters, as well as to reduce the growth, reproduction, and survival in aquatic organisms.
We have taken steps to address this issue. In December 2016, the government published a proposed Order to add triclosan to the List of Toxic Substances. This enables the government to introduce measures to manage risks from triclosan. The government has proposed to limit the amount of triclosan that ends up in Canadian waters.
These are important steps, but we’d like to see it taken further. We are currently urging the government to ban triclosan altogether.
For a more detailed briefing on this subject, please refer to the document below.